'Shut the mall down': Internet aghast after mall security orders man to take off 'Jesus Saves' T-shirt
BLOOMINGTON, MINNESOTA: A man who was wearing a "Jesus Saves" T-shirt was instructed to take off his clothing or leave the Mall of America last weekend. The recorded incident which has gone viral now shows a security guard at the nation's most famous shopping center in Minnesota, telling the man, "If you want to shop here you need to take off that shirt." The same guard is shown in another clip, saying "Jesus is associated with religion and it is offending people. People have been offended."
The video which was recorded on January 7 has created a sense of resentment online with one group organizing a protest at the Mall where they decided to wear their own "Jesus Saves" shirts. According to Daily Mail, a spokesperson said that the man was allowed to remain in the mall while still wearing his shirt following the incident even though it can be clearly heard that the guards threatened to kick him out.
In the original video, the man was seen wearing a T-shirt with a religious slogan. The back of the shirt read "Jesus is the only way" while the popular "coexist" symbol which advocates different religions living alongside each other peacefully was crossed out.
The videos have now been shared across multiple social media platforms such as Twitter and Tiktok while one was live-streamed to Facebook on January 7. One week ago, he had also been issued with a 24-hour trespass for "soliciting guests." Three security guards surround the man during the tense exchange.
People in America being offended by shirt with word Jesus on it. I wonder if he had Allah instead if the same situation would’ve come to play? pic.twitter.com/QnWzfqGD1V— I Meme Therefore I Am 🇺🇸 (@ImMeme0) January 14, 2023
"I didn't say anything though. I didn't speak. I didn't say anything. I just went to Macy's," the man can be heard saying according to the outlet. The guard replies, "Again, I'm giving you a couple options. You can take the shirt off and you can go to Macy's and you can do your shopping. Or you can leave the mall, OK? Those are your only options right now."
Later the officer claimed that he was engaging in "religious soliciting," which the Mall forbids. The man, however, said that he was not preaching anything but instead just wore the dress for shopping. Mall policies prohibit "inappropriate attire," including apparel that "has obscene language, obscene gestures or racial/religious/ethnic slurs that are likely to create a disturbance." The Mall also forbids "picketing, demonstrating, soliciting, protesting or petitioning."
I’m not even Christian but this is crazy!! A guy got kicked out of mall of America for wearing a “Jesus saves” shirt. Saying he’s soliciting just by wearing that shirt and he needs to take it off. UNACCEPTABLE #mallofamerica pic.twitter.com/megh2PQI6K— 🇺🇸🇪🇹 (@MessiNegus) January 12, 2023
The man was asked on a different day to leave the mall because he was preaching. But this time he appeared to have just roamed around the mall. A guard was heard saying, "Yes, you're walking wearing that shirt in the form of soliciting and we've had guests come up and say they're offended by your shirt."
"I'm wearing the biggest Jesus shirt I can find"
Many Twitter users also reacted to this incident. A Twitter user captioned the video, "I automatically assumed this was overseas, but it's right here in America." Another user replied, "If I ever go to the Mall of America again, I'm wearing the biggest Jesus shirt I can find." One tweeted, "I don't know the backstory on this one, but mall cops are not my fave. That said, if I'm honest, I also appreciate going there and shopping without low-quality proselytizers trying to save me with doomsday jump scares. But that's just me." Another user opined, "When you say something is "open to the public" it means everyone is welcome. Not doing so should result in losing your right to remain open for business. Shut the mall down." Meanwhile, Pastor Chase Thompson wrote, "He should sue them into oblivion. This wouldn’t have happened anywhere in the U.S. until very recently, and it certainly wouldn’t have happened if he’d had a pride shirt on and even 50 people complained."
He should sue them into oblivion. This wouldn’t have happened anywhere in the U.S. until very recently, and it certainly wouldn’t have happened if he’d had a pride shirt on and even 50 people complained.— Chase Thompson (@pastorchaset) January 13, 2023
When you say something is "open to the public" it means everyone is welcome. Not doing so should result in losing your right to remain open for business. Shut the mall down.— Propaganda Sniper 🇺🇸 (@HindlesKitchen) January 12, 2023
I don't know the backstory on this one, but mall cops are not my fave. That said, if I'm honest, I also appreciate going there and shopping without low-quality proselytizers trying to save me with doomsday jump scares.— Citizen Stewart (@citizenstewart) January 13, 2023
But that's just me.
If I ever go to the Mall of America again, I'm wearing the biggest Jesus shirt I can find.— Wyatt Sullivan (@wyatt_sullivan) January 12, 2023
This article contains remarks made on the Internet by individual people and organizations. MEAWW cannot confirm them independently and does not support claims or opinions being made online.